The Leslie Ellis family descends from Sir Thomas Ellis or Ellys of Wyham, a small village near Louth in North Lincolnshire. He was Deputy for Francis Manners, Earl of Rutland, Lord Deputy of Lincolnshire from 1612. As a young man, Rutland was imprisoned alongside his brothers for supporting the Earl of Essex’s ill-fated 1601 rebellion against Queen Elizabeth’s government. However, with the support of the Cecils, he swiftly regained favour and rose to become a prominent courtier during the reign of King James.[i] As Rutland’s Deputy, Sir Thomas almost certainly encountered King James during the Scottish-born monarchs many visits to Rutland’s home at Belvoir. Sir Thomas was created a baronet on 30th June 1660. His grandson, Sir Richard Ellis of Wynham in Lincolnshire, was a zealous non-conformist and author of a book entitled Fortuita Sacra which is extremely rare. Sir Richard was returned to Parliament twice for Grantham, and three times for Boston, commencing in 1722.
[i] In 1618 Rutland personally brought charges of witchcraft against three sisters who he believed responsible for the deaths of his two young sons.
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